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Edamame, a heart-healthy appetizer or snack. Photo courtesy SeapointFarms.com.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

 

KAREN HOCHMAN is editorial director of THE NIBBLE.

 

 

April 2010

Product Reviews / Main Nibbles / Vegetables

Edamame

Try Edamame Beans For Health & For Fun

 

CAPSULE REPORT: Why limit your enjoyment of edamame to Japanese restaurants? They’re available nationwide in the frozen vegetables aisle. Edamame are a tasty, fun and very healthy snack and recipe ingredient. These baby soy beans are rich in vitamins and minerals. In fact, they’re the only vegetable that offers a complete protein profile equal to both meat and eggs in its protein content. And kids will enjoy eating them from the pod. This is Page 1 of a four-page article about edamame soy beans, including recipes. Click on the black links below to visit other pages.

 

Edamame Overview

Edamame, pronounced eh-dah-MAH-may, are baby soybeans, boiled in salted water and served whole as a snack or appetizer. They can be further flavored with rice wine, Szechuan pepper, nanami togarashi or Chinese Five Spice.

The name is Japanese for “twig bean” (eda = twig" + mame = bean), referring to young soybeans cropped with their twig. You can find them served this way in Japan, but edamame are an imported product. With the exception of a few ultra-premium Japanese restaurants that import them on the twig, you’ll see the “mame” but not the “eda.”

The green soybeans in the pod are picked prior to ripening (when they turn into the familiar beige soybean color) when they are at 80%-90% of the pod width. Until the rise in popularity of Japanese restaurants in the U.S., edamame were mostly encountered on visits to Japan, China and Korea. (The Chinese name is maodou.)

A popular snack (the boiled soybeans are eaten by pushing them directly from the pods into your mouth; the shell is not eaten), edamame have become a popular addition to recipes as well. Add them to salads, stir-frys, casseroles, soups and almost any savory food. Make a healthy dip. Edamame are attractive garnishes on any food, from baked and mashed potatoes to steaks and chops. They can be served hot, cold or at room temperature.

Edamame are perhaps the healthiest vegetable you can serve. Continue to the next page to see the health benefits of edamame.

 

Continue To Page 2: Edamame & Health

 

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